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Stephen Colbert Is Banning This When His Show Returns in Person in June

"I've got great news for you and even better news for me," the late night host said.

After more than a year, Stephen Colbert can't believe the time has come. On his May 24 episode of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, the late-night host announced the show is returning to in-person filming at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City with a full-capacity audience in June. The late-night show stopped filming in the theater when the COVID-19 pandemic hit New York City in March 2020 and he hasn't had an in-person audience since.

But just because a studio audience is coming back, that doesn't mean that there aren't going to be any pandemic-related rules in place. Read on to see what Colbert's show is banning as it makes its big return.

Read the original article on Best Life.

Colbert said he will start filming with an audience on June 14.

Stephen Colbert on "The Late Show" on May 24, 2021
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert/YouTube

In a clip about the move back to the theater, Colbert said, "I've got great news for you and even better news for me, because on June 14, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert will return to Ed Sullivan Theater. Hell yes!"

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Colbert started filming The Late Show from home in March of last year. More recently, he began filming episodes from a small set within the Ed Sullivan Theater rather than in the usual space.

"I can't wait to say things that are happy and then hear people cheer," Colbert continued. "Or boo. Or belch. I do not give a f*** at this point. Let her rip!"

RELATED: The One Guest Stephen Colbert Never Wants to Interview Again.

Audience members are banned without proof of vaccination.

The Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City in February 2020
Danny Bakker /

Colbert made a point to note that the return to the theater "is not going to be some socially distanced smattering of a few people." Instead, the full 400-plus seats of the Ed Sullivan Theater will be packed. But, in order to keep everyone safe, audience members are required to prove that they have been vaccinated against COVID-19.

"Of course vaccines have long been required at the Ed Sullivan Theater, ever since the deadly 1964 outbreak of Beatlemania," Colbert joked in reference to the band's famous performance on The Ed Sullivan Show.

"For all of us to be together safely, everyone in the audience will have to be fully vaccinated," Colbert said. "It's like, no glove, no love. No poke, no joke. No needle, no live interview with Don Cheadle."

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Other COVID precautions will be in place at The Late Show, too.

The audience during an episode of "The Late Show"
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert/YouTube

The Hollywood Reporter notes that in addition to the audience being fully vaccinated, crew members working on the show will be tested for COVID-19 regularly. Also, masks will be optional for audience members who wish to wear them.

Colbert added in his message that the return to in-person filming will mean the Ed Sullivan Theater is the first on Broadway to "come back full steam."

The majority New York City's Broadway theaters are set to reopen to fully packed houses three months later, on Sept. 14.

Colbert said the return to an in-person audience is due to increased vaccinations.

Stephen Colbert on "The Late Show" on May 24, 2021
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert/YouTube

Colbert made sure to recognize those who have already gotten vaccinated in his message about the return. "The Ed Sullivan Theater will be packed with folks like you—the ones who have made this reopening possible by staying safe, thinking about your fellow citizens, and getting vaccinated," he said.

In a statement to THR, the host added, "Over the last 437 days, my staff and crew (and family!) have amazed me with their professionalism and creativity as we made shows for an audience we couldn't see or hear. I look forward to once again doing shows for an audience I can smell and touch."

Those who would like to be part of The Late Show audience can register for tickets at, though registration through July 1 is already fully booked.

RELATED: Watch Dolly Parton Make Stephen Colbert Cry With an Old Folk Song.

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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